The United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI) is a set of six investment principles that incorporates ESG into investment decisions. The commitments are voluntary options that an investor can take to aim their investment strategies to match with broader societal objectives.
The principles are as follows:
The fundamental notion of the principles is that environmental and social problems–such as climate change and human rights–can impact the performance of an investment portfolio. Therefore, if an asset manager is to properly perform their fiduciary responsibility, the ESG factors of an investment should be taken into consideration along with financial performance and expectation. By outlining the six principles, the PRI hopes to provide an accessible framework for mainstream asset managers to understand the importance of ESG issues.
If an investor is a signatory to the UNPRI, they have exclusive access to numerous investor tools, guidance documents, case studies, the Collaboration Portal and the Data Portal, which can help an asset manager better understand ESG issues.
About UNPRI’s Founding:
The PRI was originally started in 2005 in response to the then United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s invitation for the world’s largest institutional investors to understand the effect of ESG issues on the performance of investment portfolios. The group organized by Secretary General Annan included members from institutions in twelve countries and a 70-person advisor team, made up of experts from the investment sector and civil society. Officially launching in 2006, the PRI has grown from roughly $250 trillion under management to over $2750 trillion in 2020.